The Advocate
November 19, 2021

After months of negotiations, closed door meetings and much speculation, NC is on track to have a state budget. The General Assembly passed the budget this week and Government Cooper is expected to sign it into law. This is a significant achievement since the state has not had a full budget plan to work from since 2019.

The budget has many provisions in it that are essential to the real estate industry. Below you will find a list of these provisions. In the coming weeks, we will provide additional details about the priority ones.

Budget Provisions

Totals

  • Net appropriation for FY 2021-22 is $25.9 billion and net appropriation for FY 2022-23 is $27.0 billion.
  • The Rainy Day Fund balance will be $4.25 billion at the end of the biennium.


Broadband - REALTOR® Priority – NCR’s Legislative Policy supports broadband grants program to increase expansion, easing regulatory restrictions, incentives for public-private partnerships and upgrading existing facilities.

  • Broadband Funding
    • $15mm in 2021-22 for Community Colleges
    • $4.6mm each year for school connectivity
    • $1mm in 2021-22 for mapping
    • $1 billion for broadband expansion projects, split between the state’s existing GREAT grant program and new initiatives
  • Broadband Policy Decisions
    • GREAT grants process changes
    • Stopgap broadband solutions
    • Expansion of broadband funds to fixed wireless and satellite, and a county/state breakdown.
    • County broadband acceleration


Housing Finance Agency (HFA) - REALTOR® Priority

  • 10,660,000 each year for the HFA
  • $10mm for affordable housing in Robeson County
  • State homeowners assistance fund created to mitigate hardships caused by COVID-19 Pandemic.
  • $10mm for affordable housing in Forsyth County
  • $170,000,000 for the Workforce Housing Loan Program (this is $150 million more than what has been appropriated in any other year in the previous decade).
  • $35mm for affordable housing in Dare County


Economic Development

  • $30mm for Economic Development Partnership of North Carolina (EDPNC) marketing funds - REALTOR® Priority – NCR’s legislative policy supports the funding and activities of the EDPNC and incentive programs necessary to attract businesses to the state.
  • Modifications to Film Grant Program
  • Rural Tourism Recovery Funding
  • Provides $283 million to support deepening and expanding the Wilmington Harbor.


Infrastructure

  • $8 Billion in total infrastructure spending on school construction, critical projects at every University across the state; funds for community colleges, expanding broadband service, local water and sewer projects, airports, roads and rail; parks, trails and clean water conservation.


Other Policy Provisions

  • Limits local governments from imposing harmony requirements for permit approval if the development contains affordable housing units for families or individuals with incomes below eighty percent (80%) of the area median income.
  • Water and sewer infrastructure for affordable housing projects included for multiple cities.
  • $2mm for affordable housing to Habitat for Humanity
  • Historic Tax Credits Extended to 2026 – REALTOR® priority – NCR’s legislative policy supports the continuation of historic preservation and restoration.
  • Revises Emergency Management Act to require a vote of the Council of State to extend a statewide emergency beyond 30 days (effective Jan. 1, 2023).


Tax Provisions

  • State and Local Tax Deductions (SALT) Changes included REALTOR® Priority
  • PPP loan expense deductibility changes included REALTOR® Priority
  • Increases the zero tax bracket to $25,500
  • Phases out Corporate Tax completely by 2029
  • Reduces personal rate to 4.99% in 22 and eventually goes to 3.99% after 2026.


Provision Removed

  • Removed the provision that would have changed how the Housing Finance Agency operated and delayed all their programs by at least a year. REALTOR® Priority. If this provision had remained it would have required them to operate on the state accounting and budgeting system. This would have required all loans and grants to go through a more bureaucratic and slower process. It would have delayed loan closings and potentially put them outside hard requirements surrounding closing document presentation timeline.


These are such great wins for our industry so please stay tuned to future Advocates for additional budget details about these wins and any additional changes that may occur.


LINKS TO MORE RESOURCES

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